We've spent a fair amount of time talking about low-end Radeon HD 4000 derivatives lately, but it looks like AMD might also have another mid-range member of that lineup in the works. According to Fudzilla's Fuad Abazovic, AMD will soon introduce a Radeon HD 48x0 based on a cut-down version of the RV770 graphics processor.
The RV770 powers existing Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 offerings, and it has a 256-bit memory interface and 800 stream processors. By contrast, Fuzilla says the RV770LE in the upcoming 48x0 card will have a 192-bit bus, fewer stream processors, and a clock speed below the Radeon HD 4850's 625MHz.
In light of the more spartan specs, Fudo predicts AMD's mystery card will turn out to be "significantly slower and cheaper" than the 4850. Newegg charges just $169.99 for its cheapest 4850 at the moment, so future, RV770LE-based cards could conceivably materialize under the $150 mark—close to the same playing field as Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GT.